lULEN COUNIV PUBLIC IIBBARY
3 1833 03334 8043
(Gc 975.702 G76s
A history of Graniteville
Allen County Public Librar>'
900 Webster Street
PC Box 2270
Fort Wayne, IN 46801-2270
A HISTORY OF GRANITEVILLE
Mrs. Mae Steadman
I can't think of a better introduction for my remarks today
than from the first sentence in "Reflections of Grani tevi lie" by
Sharon and Sue McLaughlin published at the time of the
Bicentennial on Graniteville in 1976. Quote:
"There is a beginning for every thing "--and as you read
in the 'Journal,' the first inhabitants of Granitiville
were the Wes to Indians, and from them came the name
Horse Creek. "
America itself was young--only 69 years old, when
Graniteville was born. Grani teville ' s growth has kept pace and
adjusted well to all the changing facets of the Nation.
Especially the citizens who grew up in Graniteville are proud of
our town. We believe it is still standing tall and becoming what
its founder intended it to be : a well-educated people, a
prosperous town, recognized for a superb product, not only in
America, but internationally as well!
We can't think of Graniteville without thinking of William
Gregg, for it is to William Gregg that the Graniteville of today
owes its beginning. Graniteville is listed in the National
Registry of Historic Places, and more and more people are becoming
aware of Graniteville. Gregg started out in business in
Columbia, South Carolina, as a silversmith and jeweler, and it is
said he never took off his workman's apron until he was worth
$50,000. Actually, Gregg closed his business in Columbia because
of ill health.
P3-70 1 n^ I.'
Gregg married Marinah Jones of Ridge Spring, and it was her
brother, General James Jones, who built a mill in Vaucluse in
which William Gregg invested in in 1836, and his career as a
manufacturer commenced. Having invested heavily in Vaucluse, he
kept a close watch over his investment, and it was here that he
began plans for a larger mill with adequate housing for its
employees . One thing he had to have for a larger operation was
wa te r .
Dr. W. W. Wallace, in his book on Granitevi lie , said Gregg
had determined as early as 1843 to build a great cotton mill and
had selected his location. His experience at Vaucluse had
revealed to him advantages of Horse Creek Valley. Gregg planned
to convert this spot, so little suited to agriculture, from
extreme poverty to wealth. In fact, the first farm families
called the place "Hard Scrabble" which gives us an idea of
conditions there. That wasn't the only reason Gregg chose this
place. Immediately at hand were beds of granite, forests of long
leaf pine (supplying one of the world's finest building
materials), water, and a canal already in use.
From those who came to help in construction, Mr. Gregg chose
families he felt would make desirable workers and citizens for
his model community. With all this construction, Graniteville
became a reality in 1845. Determined to put the comfort of his
people first; two churches, an academy, and homes were completed
before the mill was built. Mr. Gregg did not sacrifice beauty
for haste and economy. Evidence of this still exists in the
Gothic architecture found on what was then called "Blue Row."
Blue Row has been photographed and written about so much that it
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has become almost synonymous with Grani teville. The quaint,
Gothic-style architecture of the cottages and St. John United
Methodist Church gives it an air of story-book charm, unique to
this town. At one time all the houses on the street were washed
in a blue wash, hence the name. The original cost of each house
was $400. They were rented to employees only, and maintenance
was done by the company. Upon the advent of electricity, the
houses were wired and electricity furnished at no cost.
Canal Street is the oldest street in town, named because of
the canal which is older than the town. In the words of the
McLaughlin sisters, "It stretched like a liquid ribbon for almost
a mile, ornamented in spring by azaleas, and in summer by crape
myrtle blossoms. Although it is a very old and beautiful part of
town, the canal is most vital to the manufacturing process of the
Certainly Mr. Gregg set out to care for the whole person, so
he must have been a psychologist as well as a manufacturer.
Getting back to the houses--! must tell you that in front of
the houses there were wells--two or three houses using one
well--and the women of the community used the wells for social
contact. They were probably too busy to visit unless a neighbor
I'm told that at the advent of bathrooms, many of the houses
were equipped with them even before many people in cities were
able to afford them.
Again I'd like to go to Dr. Wallace's account of
Graniteville. "Graniteville was instantly recognized as an
American plant and certainly the leading textile mill in the
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south. Visitors from both North and South describe with
admiration in newspapers and magazines the wonders, the most
modern equipment, housed in the most substantial granite
building, with its yard blooming with lovely flowers, surrounded
by one of the world's model industrial villages, all set down
beside a clear stream in the midst of the vast forest of pines,
in an out of the way corner of the state distrusting such
enterprises--an enterprise more over not for profit only, but
calling to enlightenment and prosperity one of the most neglected
populations in the country."
Gregg himself described his town in a letter to Freeman Hunt
dated October 22, 1849. "The village covers about 150 acres of
ground, contains two handsome Gothic churches, an academy, hotel,
10 or 12 stores and about 100 cottages belonging to the company
and occupied by persons in their services. The houses varied in
size from 3 to 9 rooms each, nearly all built after the Gothic
Cottage order. The property cost $300,000.
We have a large class of white people in South Carolina who
are not slave holders and who work for a livelihood."
Gregg personally interviewed each worker for he felt that
the maintenance of a moral character was necessary for a model
village. The use of alcohol was not permitted in the village and
to this day is not allowed to be sold — however, in adjoining
Madison, it was a different story.
There is a tale told by the father of Miss Clara Harrigal
that he was with Gregg as they drove towards Grani tevi lie , when a
man of not too good repute slipped out of the woods with a jug.
"What's in that jug?" demanded Mr. Gregg. "Molasses," said the
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culprit, but circumstances spoke louder than words, and Gregg
flooded the road with whiskey as he broke the jug over his buggy
wheel. "Now, how much did that molasses costs?" Gregg inquired,
and handed the man the amount with the warning that the next time
he might get the buggy whip instead of the money. Mr. X (let us
call him for his descendants are excellent people), was the
expert English machinist, and was the only man in the village
whose lapses into liquor Mr. Gregg would tolerate. After his
periodic sprees, Mr. X would weep out his repentance to Mr. Gregg
and promise never to do it again, and so useful was he that the
whiskey-hating president would each time accept the pledge and
keep him on his job. It was a boy in this same family who was so
rebellious about going to school that his parents confessed their
helplessness and complained to Mr, Gregg against having to pay
the daily 5 cents for his absence. (I'll tell you about this
later) When Mr. Gregg asked if they were willing for his getting
the boy to go to school, they consented and the president applied
a good stiff dose of hickory stick and had no more trouble.
I mentioned the Graniteville Academy earlier. It was one of
Gregg's pride and joys. It was built in keeping with the Gothic
style. At first, the curriculum only went through the 6th grade.
Later grades 7 through 10 were added. The school provided a
9-month course-October- July ; the school day beginning at 8:30
a.m. and lasting until 4:30 p.m., with a 2-hour lunch break so
pupils not only could have their lunches, but could carry hot
lunches to the mill.
The school had the first successful compulsory attendance
rule that worked. Parents were required to keep their children
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under 12 in school. When they didn't, they were fined 5 cents a
day if a child did not attend school. Mr. Gregg would go so far
as to tell the offending parent his job was in jeopardy if a
child did not attend school. It was the first school in the
South, and perhaps in the nation, to furnish free textbooks to
the pupils. If a pupil was sent to the office, it meant the mill
office and not to the superintendent's office. Mr. Gregg visited
the school daily and the children loved him although he was very
strict with the children. In summer when the peaches in his
orchard on Kalmia Hill were ripe, he would bring tubs of them and
set them down in the school yard for the children to help
The first high school class graduated in 1899. In 1922, the
academy closed and the pupils marched to the new Leavelle
McCampbell School that the company had built.
My father attended the academy, but my mother attended a
private school run by Mrs. Anna Hard. After her school was
closed, she taught at the academy. I was in her class in the 5th
Today, what remains of the Academy building is used by
Senior Citizens as a leisure Club.
From the beginning, school has been a point of pride and one
of the most unifying elements in Graniteville .
Implanting the belief in the original settlers that
education was the common denominator for growth and achievement,
Mr. Gregg provided and supported a school which denied no one, no
matter how poor, the right to go to school. I guess the good
example set with our forefathers was handed down in the
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Graniteville Schools for attendance has always been good. I know
that while I was principal of Byrd School, I had a habit, if a
child's name appeared in the absentee list in the a.m., of
calling to find out what was wrong. Only occasionally did I find
a child not at school because of having overslept if both parents
were working. Almost always, they'd come to school, though
tardy. Also, from personal experience, I found the parents in
Graniteville most cooperative, who wanted the very best for their
children. Long before teachers' aids were in schools in Aiken
County mothers volunteered to help.
Byrd School library was started by parents who helped to
raise money for books and who gave of their time to man the
library until the county furnished us a librarian.
Taken from "Reflections"
Grantiville was only 15 years old when South Carolina
seceeded from the Union. Company F, of the 7th Regiment of South
Carolina Volunteers was composed entirely of Graniteville men and
Because Graniteville was furnishing material for Southern
military purposes. General Sherman ordered the mills destroyed,
along with a paper mill in the valley. General Joe Wheeler at
Aiken, held Sherman's army away from Graniteville and the
destruction of the mill.
During this time food was scarce, and Graniteville Company
was besieged by beggars in person and by mail. While all
possible help was given to those who came, there had to be a
Page 7 of 1 4
limit. Mr. Gregg bartered cloth for food for his employees and
they fared better than most. In trying to care for his own
people first, he received merciless criticism from the press and
even from the pulpit because he had turned many away. Down
through the ages, Graniteville has contributed not only men and
money, but the essentials for uniforms, tents, and other textile
requirements for military use.
Mules were a necessity in Graniteville. They transported
raw cotton from farms to the mill, they hauled cotton bales to
the mill; then moved the oznaburg material from the mill to the
nearest shipping point. Wagons pulled by mules were first school
buses and they carried the high school children back and forth to
Vaucluse. This was possibly a first.
Mules were even used in the first sanitation system: behind
the mules were carts loaded with large barrels facetiously
nicknamed "honey-buckets" because of the odor of their contents.
These honey-bucket carts ran with regularity throughout
Graniteville and emptied near where Byrd School is now. However
crude it may seem to us now it was one of the first organized
collection systems in the country.
NO STRIKES OR UNIONS
There has never been a strike in Granitevile. Probably the
reason being that the people feel that they are being treated
fairly, or if not, they can settle their own differences. Maybe
William Gregg was partly responsible when he hired the right
people to live in his Graniteville. One incident told in Dr.
Wallace's book which showed that the workers could settle their
Paae 8 of 14
own differences took place when a Mr. Guerry was Superintendent
at Graniteville. He fired a very competent and much loved and
respected boss of one of the rooms. All the people working under
this man immediately walked out, causing the entire mill to be
shut down. Down it stayed until Mr. Guerry invited this man
back. Then the entire working force returned. It was this same
Mr. Guerry who took all the stored records of Graniteville
Company to the ballfield and made a bonfire of them. I might add
Mr. Guerry remained in Graniteville 13 monthsl
Another incident showing the workers could handle their own
problems took place in Vaucluse when the Union sent workers there
to try to organize a Union of the workers. The majority of the
workers were so incensed wanting to run the organizers out of
town that the National Guard was ordered in to prevent trouble.
Needless to say, no union was organized and no strike occurred.
There are certain landmarks in Graniteville that I need to
tell you about or at least mention. They are:
The two first churches: First Baptist which burned and
has been rebuilt twice.
St. John United Methodist Church.
The Graniteville Cementery
The Graniteville Bell
Speaking of St. John Methodist Church in Grani tevi lle--there
was an article on this church in the Aiken Standard last year
that you probably read, where I was baptized as an infant (I
still have my Cradle Roll Certificate), attended Sunday School
and Church there, and in which I was married. I distinctly
remember when the beautiful beams that had been hidden for years
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by a false ceiling were discovered when Babe Yaun and his father
went up in the attic to do some work. If you haven't seen the
interior of this church, please attend a service there. It was
designed by the famous Charleston Architect, Edward Brickell
While I was writing the History of St. John's in Aiken, I
also did some research on St. John (doesn't have 's like ours)
because at one time these two churches were on the same charge,
with St. John in Graniteville being the larger and mother church.
THE GRANITEVILLE CEMETERY
The Graniteville Cemetery was begun about 1855 with Mr.
Gregg directing much of the planning and planting of trees and
shrubs. A well and later a pump was provided to furnish water
for flowers and shrubbery. It was a place of serenity and
The gazebo in this cemetery is one of Graniteville ' s oldest
landmarks and was used to store coffins when it was too rainy for
There are many legends and stories connected with this
cemetery. Probably one of the oldest and best known is in the
oldest section of the cemetery — an inscription on a little tomb
reads "The Little Boy"--1855. The legend is told of a little boy
traveling alone on a train who became ill and was taken off the
train at Graniteville and cared for by the good women of
Graniteville. His high fever made him too sick to tell his name
or where he was going. When he died in October 1855, the good
women who had collected scraps of satin and silks from Christmas
Page 10 of 14
wrappings, lined a coffin made by the menfolk, gave him a
Christian burial in their cemetery and from their nickels and
dimes bought a simple little tombstone.
I often wondered from where the flowers that are still
placed on the little grave were coming and recently I found out.
They are being removed from other graves. At least someone still
THE COMPANY FARM
After you turn off Breezy Hill Road going to the exit to
1-20, you will pass evidence of Gregg's model company farm where
cotton was grown for the mill, and vegetables for the employees,
as well as various fruits and pecans trees. Also, there was a
Smithy Shop and Stables for the horses.
There were 8 houses there for the farm families and I'm
told, some of the old barns still standing contain relics that
are fast deteriorating.
We must not leave out the Artesian Well which was drilled
about 1900, according to Monroe Hamilton, a long-time resident of
Graniteville and now deceased, by a man known as "Klondike." It
is said he drilled the well using a steam engine for power. It
was always a nice place to stop to get a cool, sweet drink of
water on the way home from school or work on a hot day.
It was restored and enclosed inside a granite structure in
1973 to retain its historical value and to provide a host of fond
memories to many who live in this area.
Page 11 of 14
THE HICKMAN HALL
The Hickman Hall was the town's recreational center and now
the Employment Center. It had bowling lanes, a swimming pool,
the town Library on the first floor and the top floor was used
for dances and parties. I'm sure I must have read every book in
the library. My aunt who was librarian lived with us, and many
times she found me asleep between the stacks exhausted.
In the summer, Gregg Park was the recreation center until
Gregg Civic Center took over the old Aiken Outing Club. In the
summers, there were Community Watermelon picnics, ice cream
get-togethers, band concerts, walks to Flat Rock, etc. --Gregg
brought in lecturers for culture.
In W. E. Woodward's book, "The Way Our People
Lived" — Woodward grew up in Grani tevi lie-- , he said people had
watermelon every day for a 20-pound melon sold for 5 cents.
Land cost about $3.00 an acre. From this same book, I
learned about the first bicycle in Graniteville in 1887 and how
every one came out to see Dick Ross learning to ride his high
front wheel bicycle.
GRANITEVILLE MEDICAL CENTER
Graniteville, as early as 1849, had a medical plan Mr.
Gregg organized a sick fund to which each family made a trifling
contribution, and from which the doctors fees were paid. (The
conception of such a medical plan, like so many of Gregg's ideas,
was way ahead of other manufacturers of the day.)
Page 12 of 14
One of the earliest medical care centers was in St. Paul's
Episcopal Parrish House. With the equipment in the basement, an
operating table and medical suppplies, minor surgery could be
performed. A trained nurse and an aid carried on valuable
medical services in the community.
Today, Graniteville has a medical facility built by
Graniteville Company that is a credit to the town.
THE GRANITEVILLE BELL
Not many of the workers owned an alarm clock--I suppose they
really didn't need one. The original Granite Mill had 2 towers,
and in one hung a huge bell. (It's still there.)
The bell was rung to awaken people, to signal the time to
report to work, the time to go to lunch and return, and the time
to quit in the evening. It was also used for special occasions,
ringing in the New Year, the end of wars, as a fire alarm, and
upon request it tolled the age of an esteemed citizen at death.
In other words, it was the communication system for the community
in its early years.
Carrying out Gregg's passion for educating youth, in 1941
the Graniteville Company established the Gregg Foundation which
began awarding scholarships to worthy students whose parents live
in Graniteville or whose parents work for the Graniteville
Company. Since that time, from 2 to 22 scholarships have been
awarded each year.
In addition to their normal scholarship program,
Graniteville Company made an outstanding contribution to the
academic progress of the community and the State of South
Page 13 of 14
Carolina by a gift to furnish the rare-book section in the
library at the University of South Carolina in Columbia to be
known as the Graniteville Room.
Though proud of its past, Grani tevi lie ' s face is turned
toward the future. The houses in Graniteville are now owned by
individuals, many are not kept up as they were when the company
owned them. Since Mr. Posner took over the Company there is no
longer a police force, but I understand there has been and are
still being improvements. Many descendants of the original
settlers are still living in Graniteville, and I'm sure they
won't allow anything bad to happen to their town if they can
Mrs. Mae Steadman
Page 14 of 14
Hardscrabble nas a very siall neighborhood of fariers prior to 1845 when Killiai Gregg chose the, place to build his till. .
One of the fex hoies in Hardscrabble in 1845 was occupied by an old couple Mhose naie has long been forgotten. It Mas a log
cabin with a wooden and lud chiiney. The cabin was built under a poplar tree that stood at the north end of "Blue Row" later
knoKn as Eregg Street.
The couple, according to legend, sold their land to Milliai Gregg when the 5000 acre tract was acquired for the lill.
Note; According to a plat of the original owners of what is now the Piatt property, "Blue Row' was "Gregg Street" first.
Hany other nicknaies were used out of Gregg's hearing. Soie of these were "Punken Gully", "Skillet ftlley", 'Hocking Bird
Branch", "Sweet Gui Hollow", and 'Shake Rag'.
Gregg deteriined as early as 1843 to build a great cotton lill and had selected his location as Horse Creek Valley. It had
■any advantages - building laterials, fuel, water power, and a railroad only a lile away - then a rare convenience.
Harch 20, 1843, he and his wife's brother, Jaies Jones, bought for $2500.00 frot John Bausket II, 423A containing Vauduse
Hill and lost of the subsequent Graniteville Land. Gregg used the southern portion of the land for another and larger lill
(Graniteville). Nineteen out of thirty-one stockholders were froi Charleston. Capital paid $300,000.
Gregg planned to convert this property to great wealth and to educate the 'hillers'. There had long been lills at the rapids
of Horse Creek. These rapids had long been used to saw or grind for the neighborhood. Two of these lills were Glover's Hill
near the Graniteville Factory and Richard's Hill on Bridge Creek.
Gregg's son had a letter dated July 9, 1B44, 'Hardscrabble'. The place was lade a Post Office February 4, 184B, with Enock
B. Presley as Post Master.
a) SUHHER HOUSE
The suiier house in the ceietery is one of the last landtarks. It was built in 1856 shortly after the ceietery was begun.
Soaeone had died, and the people not knowing just where to bury the body carried it to the woods on top of the hill. That
larked the beginning of one of the oldest public ceieteries in the state. The susier house was used for shelter, concerts,
and leiorial services.
b) THE LITTLE BOY'S fiRflVF
Tradition has it that a little boy, too young and too sick to travel, was put off the train here in 1855. He was cared for
by the proprieter of the hotel until his death. No one ever knew his naie or where he caie froi.
The people of Graniteville -nickled up- to have a coffin .ade and a to.b stone put on his grave. It can be found in the
ceietery with "Little Boy 1855" on it. Soie lysterious person has kept flowers on his grave ever since.
The Viuduse Mill Mas originally built several years before the Graniteville 'Old Hill" nas built and is believed to be one
of the first in the South.
In 183&, Hilliai Gregg acquired a few shares in the Vaucluse Hill soie liles froi the hoie of his Jones in-laws. He intended
to enter extensively into the lanufacturing of cotton but ill health prevented his purchasing that establishient when it «as
The granite Mall that is still standing Mas built of granite quarried near by. It Has built in 1832 and noH foris a part of
the lodern dai.
A tradition is that there Mas a forier till Mhich Mas burned. This fact is sustained by a deed of April 23, 1831, on Big
Horse Creek 'on Nhich said tract » grist lill, a cotton factory, and saw tills are erected.* Doubtless the property «as
deeded back to its original oxners after it Mas burned, and they began the erection of the lill. The corner stone is dated
1832 and still stands on the foundation of the present lill Mhich Mas erected in 1833. It Mas burned January 3, 1867, and
Mas rebuilt in 1877.
When the lill Mas built in 1877, the builders reeoved the two upper stories of the old stone lill and added three stories of
brick and tMo stories of granite. The tMO stories of granite are thus the oldest structure in South Carolina still used as a
cotton lill. In the original granite Mheel house Mith about a decade of interiission, the turbines have Mhirled for icre
than 110 years. The lill began Mith 1520 spindles and 25 loois to spin one-half of its yarn. It Mas operated by 30 Mhites
and 20 slaves Morking both mooI and cotton.
Vaucluse Mas settled by French Hugenots in 1830. The settlers gave the town the saie naae as their hojeto^n near Alvon,
France. (In all probability, that is Mhere the expression that everyone born in Vaucluse has a "knot on his head' caie froi
The old Vaucluse Hill Bell Mas cast in HidNay, Hass. and has the date 1676 on it. It Mas used is an 'alari bell', ringing at
5:00 a. I. to awaken the people. At 5:45 a.i. the bell rang out, calling the workers to the till to begin their 12 - hour day
of toils. Finally at 6:00 a.i. the 'Mork bell" rang, signaling the start of a long day. At noon the bell rang to signal
that it Mas dinner tiie. At 6:00 p.t. the bell brought the Melcoie end of the day.
THE BEGINNING OF GRflNITEVILLE SCHOOL
Hilliai Gregg, the founder of GraniteYille, was what light be called a benevolent despot. 'He acted in all his plans for the
life of the people of Graniteville, froi a profound sense of social obligation."
Mhen in 1848 Hr. Gregg was working out the plans for his venture into building the iill at Graniteville, it is certain that
the teaching of reading, writing, and arithietic to the children was as definitely a part of his prograi as the industrial
training of the operatives or the profits of the coipany. He took a great interest in school and held it dear to his heart.
Gregg inaugurated the first coipulsory education systei (although inforial and liiited yet surprisingly effective) in the
South and perhaps the first in the whole country. This is the way he described it hisself - "AH parents are required to
keep their children between the ages of sin and twelve at school. ..good teachers, books, etc. are furnished by the coipany
free of charge.' Usually in his daily visits to the till, he would stop by the school at recess tiie. The children would
diib over his buggy and he would laugh and play with thei. Very often he would go in and talk to the pupils. And, often he
would bring ya big tub of peaches froi his fan, set it in the school yard and let the children help theiselves to all the
peaches they wanted.
Hr. Gregg not only had his coipulsory school attendance law, but he was his own enforceient officer. If he found a boy
playing hooky, he would return hii to school, or if the offense were repeated, would take hii to the office for a "licking".
Several tiies he was known to go to the "ole swiiiing hole" and bring boys back to school. If the children's punishient and
the lecture given by Gregg did not suffice to secure the attendance of the children, the offending parents were fined by hii
five cents a day for every day a child stayed away froi school. Not only did he insist on the children of the village going
to school, but he was anxious for the children in the country near by to benefit also.
One day Gregg learned that a boy who had often fallen under his displeasure of truancy had sneaked off froi school and gone
fishing. Gregg lay in wait for hii on the road and as the boy case froi the bushes beside the streai, seized hii, lifted hii
into the buggy and drove hii to the lill office. The boy got a new punishient instead of the custoiary whipping. He was
stood on a high bookkeepers desk and left there without a word. The eiployees had been tipped off to ask hii questions as
they went by. Then Gregg would explain, 'There stands a boy that would rather go fishing than get an education." The little
fellow grew weary of hearing this and begged to be let down with a proiise he would never run away froi school again.
The school was known as the Graniteville Acadeiy. It was far superior to those carried on by the state and county
authorities. It was supported by the coipany and independent of state supervision. While the state schools were open three
or four lonths in a year, with poorly trained and underpaid teachers, and where children learned only a siattering of any
subject, the Graniteville Acadeiy had a regular nine lonths course froi October to July. It had teachers who were well
prepared and occupied a coifortable school house.
The school, after it had been in operation for a few years, had three teachers, two of thei ladies froi Charleston and the
third a lan.
One of the first superintendents of the Graniteville School was Nilliaa Harchant, a very extraordinary lan. He had a passion
for teaching with a burning passion like that which loves lartyrs and heroes. His desire to iipart knowledge was a living
flaie in his heart and soul. The punishients he gave his pupils were quick and severe.
On the walls of the schoolrooi were hung large yellow laps. There were no naies of any kind printed on the United States lap
- just outlines of every state, all the principal cities, rivers and lakes but no nates. The location of the places was
learned in reference to their surroundings.
Occasionally, and always without previous warning, the whole school was taken off its regular routine of studies and the
attention of all the pupils Mas concentrated for a Mhole week on soie special subject. There was an Arithietic Keek, a
Spelling Meek, etc. At this tiie every one concentrated on the one subject for that week - without even a glance at any
Soietiies Kr. Harchant would take the class on a visit to soie special place - laybe a paper lill close by or soie other
place of interest. After the children returned, they were asked to write a paper about the things they had seen on the trip.
Our school systei has continued to iiprove each year until now it ranks high in the statei Ke are aware of the fact that the
early action of Nilliai Gregg is undoubtedly soeewhat responsible for the fine reputation we enjoy today with regard to our
At the tiie Hr. Harchant was the principal of Braniteville Acadejy, firs. Anna Hard had a private school for those children
whose parents did not want to send thei to 'public' school. 'Public School' were dirty words then.
Hr. Karchant had goats - Mrs. Hard had ducks. In the afternoons when the children were coiing froi opposite directions froi
school, they poked fun at each other; Hr. Harchants goats, "baa, baa' and Anna Hard's ducks, 'quack, quack'.
Later Mrs. Hard gave up her private school to teach in the acadeiy for about sixty years and two or three generations. A
better teacher never lived.
Since then there have been lany good and dedicated teachers.
One portion of the original H-shaped building now stands. It is now used as a club house for senior citizens. Hcwever, the
top story once used as the first grade rooi and soie of the triangle cloak closets are still there. The stairs where the
little ones stuibled down to chapel are there, also.
The original and the part that still stands has the siiple Gothic beauty with its vertical siding, steep-pitched roof, and
scalloped border that the original buildings and hoies have.
SCALE IN MILES
DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY
SAVANNAH DISTRICT, CORPS OF ENGINEERS
FLOOD PLAIN INFORMATION
Aiken. County, with an area of 1,097 square miles, was
formed in 1872 from parts of Orangeburg, Lexington, Edgefield, and
Barnwell Counties. The county was named in honor of William Aiken,
builder of the South Carolina Railroad. The early settlers came
to the area to avoid malaria which, at that time, was prevalent
on the Atlantic Coast. Aiken County's early economic developrrent
was centered around agricultural products. The last decade has
been witness to a rapid population growth as manufacturing has
increased job opportunities. Continued growth and development of
the county is expected because of the mild climate, natural
resources, and expanding transportation routes.
The Stream and Its Valley
Horse Creek, with a drainage area of 158 square miles
at its mouth, joins the Savannah River near the City of Augusta,
Georgia. The watershed of Horse Creek, which drains a portion of
the Sand Hill Section of South Carolina, is almost entirely within
Aiken County. Above Vaucluse, Horse Creek flows in a steep channel
through woodlands in a narrow valley. In this upper reach, the
average stream slope is about 40.0 feet per mile; however, below
Vaucluse the stream slope becomes more gradual. The average
stream slope of Horse Creek from its headwaters to its mouth is
22.0 feet per mile.
The stream reaches of Horse Creek, Sand River, and
Bridge Creek included in this study are shown on the general rap.
Horse Creek flows southward from its source at the north-central
■ , ,„a the southeastern part of Edgefield Co. ty.
part of Ai>en County and he s ^^ ^.^^^ ^^ ^^^ ^, , „f
Horse Creek falls about 66 feet ^^ ^^ ^^^^^^^ ^,„p, „,
s-a™ included ,n *- -" ;- ^^.^ „,, , ..,„a,e area of
about 10.8 feet per m.le. Br 9 „f the CUy of
,2., .,uare ™lles. dra,ns ^^ — ^^^^^ J,„, 3 „ne north of the
,Uen and flows west " ^o- - ^ ,,3 ,,,, ,„ the 3.4
cuy of GranUevllle. ^^ ;7™;;^^, ,,,,, of about S2.5 feet
„„es of the study area « t^" ^^^^ „, ,3.0 s,uare .Ues at
p,, „,U. sand «iver w th a da nag ^^^^^^^^ ,^^^ ^^^^^
US »uth. drains the CUy ^''''\l ^^^^,„ ^,,,3 about 201 feet
creek at the CUy of «--""";.;;"„ l.^^ge slope of 35.8 feet
'" - ^-^ :""::f"H:rie"c e:;: t: ...n, of sranuevnu .
rn^irCelorla. areas at selected locations, the
Study area are Shown in Table 1.
PTruRE 1 View of Horse Creek in the
FlGUKt I. ... . ^4.,, nf r,r3niteville.
vicinity of Granitevi
.The Daughter Of William Gregg Recalls The Joys And Fears Of Her Childhood
• "My lilth summer vas spent
at Aiken boarding," Rosa
Osrs (Gregg) Chaffee »Tote in
her autobiographical sketch.
"At that time my Father
looked over the country search-
ing for a suitable spot on H-hich
to build a summer home. He
found a lovely situation at that
time called Sumimer Hill, but
Mother soon named it Kalmia
(the ixtanical name for moun-
tain laurel) as there was much
ol this beautiful flovcr around
K* ^ r'
So William and Marina
Gregg established their home,
Kalmia, on what today is still
known as Kalmia Hill. The
year was 18-!6, and just over the
hill from Kalmia lay Granite-
ville, where Gregg was build-
ing a textile manufacturing
plant and a whole village
Today, little remains of Kal-
mia — a few ancient trees, a
hedge of ancient boxwoods 20
fe«t high, some terracing along
the s\crping hillside and the
[oundatioru of an outbuilding.
Approximately where the
jregg mansion stood Is the
undsome brick home of Dr.
finley Kennedy, who acquired
the site about 30 years ago.
Rosa Gara grew up and, in
1864, married a young Confed-
erate soldier, Nathaniel G. B.
Chatee. She wrote her memoirs
.n 1327 at age 66 and she died
iirce years later, at 80.
Her autobiography was dis-
^Dvered recently in the Gregg-
jraniteviUe Library at the Uni-
/ersity of South Carolina
Mken. It gives an unrevealed
side of Gregg family life and of
a girl growing up in a wealthy
Southern family in the antebel-
It Ls reproduced here with the
cooperation of the Gregg-Gran-
ROSA CUVR.A CIIAFEE
I A.M PAST 86, so there is
Tiuch in my long life to remem-
xr, and very much that is
The first occurrence that I
tmember was when a little
ivcr 3 years, my Father and
Mother and three brothers
»ent North. \\'helher we went
)y trains or boats I have no rc-
roUection, nor do I remember
»hcre we first stopped, but re-
member MiUord CI. where we
«nt to visit some friends.
One afternoon the older pco-
jle went for a drive and left us
:hildren with our nurse Char-
olle, a;id a yowg Indy. One of
Tiy brothers nusbehavcd, what
le did I do not know, but the
ady got a switch with which to
correct him. Do not remember
(she struck him, but I flew at
ler like a tiger, scratching and
lulling at her dress, and crying
BY DONALD M. LAV/
out, "You shan't whip my
We were separated by the
nurse. No doubt the lady was
horrified at the temper of such
a scrap of mortality, and
thought me greatly spoiled, as
no doubt I was. We had a pleas-
ant walk aftcnvards, and be-
The following year, 1815, my
mind had considerably devel-
oped, for I distinctly remember
another trip North with Father,
Mother and my devoted nurse,
The boys were left in
Charleston with the father and
mother of our Bishop Ellison
AT Til AT TIME there was no
railroad In this state going
. North. • •
There was one running from
Charleston, S.C, to Hamburg,
opposite to Augusta, Ca., on
We embarked In a little
■ steamer called (the) Vander-
bilt, which plied between
Charleston, S.C. and Wilming-
ton, N.C. I remember all about
the Boat, but nothing more un-
til we reached our destination
Poughkcepsic, N.Y. I remem-
ber how the house looked
where we went to Board (or
several weeks. It has three sto-
ries, and was kept by a Mrs.
Grant, a widow, who had two
daughters, who immediately
began to make a Pet of me.
They were not grown up. but
looked very big to little me.
My sister Mary Bellinger
was born here that summer,
Sept. 1st, 1815. Dr. and Mrs.
Bellinger of Charleston, S.C.
went with us. That was proba-
bly why Mother chose that City
for a stopping place. My sister
was named tor them. At first I
was much pleased with the
baby, but the novelty soon wore
off, and I preferred to be with
my (nilhful Maria or with the
I CAN REMEMBER the dif-
ferent walks Marin and I took.
One place I loved to go to was
to the laundress who lived at
quite a distance across a
My Mother told mc that oner
I uciil up to Uio IhJrd slory
alone to a Bedroom and locked
myself in. There was conster-
nation in the house when I was
found to be missing. But In a
little while Mother's keen cars
heard a distant screaming.
I was soon located, but. the
door was locked and I did not
know how to turn the key.
Fearing that in my (right I
might try to get out of a win-
dow, which was scarcely likely,
a fireman's ladder was sent
for. However, here he came,
Mother told me if I could get
out the key to push it under the
door which I did, was soon re-
leased and the commotion
ceased. All enjoyed Pough-
kccpsie, but a parting time
I remember nothing of the
journey until we reached Wil-
mington, Del., where we
stopped to visit relatives of Fa-
ther; James Webb and family
Cousin Mary, then a young
girl, very pretty and sweet,
gave mc toys and much
pleasure. . . .
AFTER LEAVING WIL-
MINGTON, DEL., my only rec-
ollection was the gladness of
getting home to sec my darkey
friends and to rove around
Mother's lovely flower garden
which was my daily delight.
With her help and that of the
gardener I learned the nrimc of
every plant in the garden.
FATHER: A SuCcess-'ul fcuS-nesi-T-.j.-. .. .^
Marina Jones ol Ridge Spring. W4iiam Gregg then
(ounded the r ■? Co ar." ^ ...---.
GraniloviHe. H . , in a^ife il
as a small child, but site later saw a mote mevui* i^se oi .
shows rear vie a ■
sJruclurc. The house, whicn v.
orchards, was tern down many
shipped peaches lo New Ywk
. Railroad. .
by way ol int Soum Carolina
GREGG DAUGHTERS: Rosa Clara Gregg, shown at led
with younger sister Mary Bellinger Gregg, lived with her
lamily in Charleston and later at Kalmia in Aiken. Portrait is
the possession of her great-grandddaughter, Mrs.
Talmadge (Charlotte Buchanan) LeGrand of Columbia.
(Contlaued From Page 11)
Sometimes strangers would
stop, and ask if they could walk
around, and look at the roses
and other flowers. Ntother was
always willing a.-.d it the gar-
dener was too busy she would
send me to pilot them around,
much to their amusement and
surprise that so small a child
could tell the names of so many
plants and flowers.
. My fifth summer was spent
at Aiken boarding. At that time
my Father looked over the
country searching for a suit-
able spot on which to build a
summer home. He found a
lovely situation at that time
called Summer HiU. but Moth-
er soon named it Kalmia (the
Botanical name tor Mountain
Laurel) as there was much of
. this beautiful flower around
and near. Father set carpcn-
, ters to work, and the next sum-
. mer we moved Into our new
summer home. Our winters
'were spent In Charleston, S.C.
■ Our home was at the Western
" end of Boundary Street, after-
wards call Calhoun.
.'■" I BEGAN TO GO TO
. SCHOOL the winter after I was
, six. My first teacher was Miss
. Griggs, a kind pleasant wom-
■; an. My first little book had pic-
, hires in.it. Mother had taught
• me the alphabet.'! spelled (un-'
til I learned better) just as the
pictures looked to me. So when
1 came to a hen I spelled it H-e-
n — chicken, which caused
quite a little amusement to
some of the children who knew
more than I did, but my kind
teacher soon showed me the
difference; and I became an
apt scholar in that line.
But being much annoyed by
an older girl, Mother took me
away, and put me at Miss Pcr-
rj-'s where I became a remark-
able speller for one so young.
Stood head of a large class the
I wore a little silver medal as
a reward of merit. But ne.it to
me was a boy who spelled
equally as well, who could not
get above me, nor was he ever
taken do'.ra. This boy after-
wards became a physician, Dr.
Grange Simons, highly thought
of in Charleston. The honor of
the medal was divided between
us — he wearing it one week, I
the other. We were two very
proud little youngsters.
NOT WISHING the boys to be
idle all summer Father cm-
ployed a young man from
Charleston to teach them (Mr.
John Wesley Miller). I too re-
cited a little to him, but was not
kept long. A colored girl,
named Jane, daughter of our
_ l.-iundrcss was my constant
cbmp.n'nion'-^' we played 'with
AN OLD LADY: Rosa Clara Gregg Chafes holds her infant great-granddaughter,
Charlotte Buchanan, in a photo made in 1929, the year before Mrs. Chafes's death. At
left is the baby's mother, Clara Hammond Buchanan, wife of distingushed
newspaperman George Buchanan, later dean of the University of South Carolina School
of Journalism; and at right is Mrs. Buchanan's mother, Mrs. Alfred Gumming Hammond
(Charlotte Kinloch Chalce), who was Mrs. Chafee's daughter. The baby Charlotte
Buchanan is now Mrs. Talmadge LeGrand of Columbia, v/ho made this photo available
to the Aiken Standard. ' • . •
dolls, and also roved the hills
up and down for hours, often
bringing wild flowers, tearing
our clothes, and running the
risk of being bitten by snakes,
but there seemed to be few, and
The following winter when
eight years old my sister and I
were put to Mrs. Ilahnbaums
school. I just remember that
Mary did not go until the nc.Tt
winter, when but little over 5
years. Mrs. H. had a sister, a
most amiable and lovable per-
son. Miss Rebecca Badger. She
taught work, knitting, crochet
or sewing. I took crochet, and
became quite expert. To me
when out of school it became a
delightful pastime, and at Wj I
am still enjoying it and doing
nice pieces of work.
The children all loved Miss
Hebccca, but stood in awe of
her sister. We were not allowed
to go into the work room unless
our lessons were perfect. After
two enjoyable winters we were
put into another school, at the
solicitation of friends. It was
kept by Mrs. Basil Lanneau.
BEFORE GOING to this
school during the summer my
Father took me every morning
with him to GranitcviUe, and
put me to school with Mrs. B.C.
Hard. He -Mr. Hard -at that
time was bookkeeper and trea-
surer at the GranitcviUe Manu-
facturing company. , .
These two or three summers
were the very happiest of my
childhood. I loved the whole
family, and they were devoted
to mc. Sometimes Father
would be in deep thought, and
leaving to go home to late din-
ner, three miles away, would
forget me. Then there would be
a great jollification among the
children because I would be
there all night and such a frolic
we would have. Mr. Hard joir.-.
ing us in ever/ game. Such tun
we had. . '
At Graniteville I m.et Bella
Montgomery, her father being
superuitendent for the factory.
We became devoted friends but
she married just before I did
and had a most unhappy life,
until after the death of her
ONE SAD THING in my
child life was my great fear of
Father. No one knew it except
my plaNTTiate Jane. To me he
seemed very austere, but I
doubt ver>' much if he was, for
I did not find it so Ln later
years. One circumstance
helped on this great fear. An
uncle was visiting us in
Charleston. I was suffering
with tooth-ache. He said to Fa-
tlicr if you will hold the chj'ld, I
will pull Lhe tooth out, which to
mv terror they proceeded to
do. ■ , '.
Page 13) • ■ ■ '
F rrd s i v^-^-— -^'-^ ^
f.V^-^u STC I V I
B>.i.nd.To.|V....- M MANCHESTR
■^ I '